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  • Swiss government rejects refugee’s restitution claim

    ZURICH, Feb. 23 (JTA) — Should Switzerland pay restitution for its wartime policy regarding Jewish refugees? The resounding no offered by the Swiss Cabinet has received an equally resounding condemnation from Jewish leaders here and abroad. The Cabinet, known as the Federal Council, rejected last week the $68,000 compensation claim of Charles Sonabend, a World…

  • Fired Swiss guard returns to Zurich to prove his case

    ZURICH, March 17 (JTA) — The former Swiss security guard who saved Holocaust-era documents from the teeth of a shredder is back in Switzerland for the first time since he fled the country. Christoph Meili and his wife, Giuseppina, have returned to Switzerland for the first time since April 1997, when they left the country…

  • Swiss president’s interview provokes new controversy

    BERN, Jan. 5 (JTA) — The year has begun with a new controversy involving Switzerland’s president, Swiss Jewish leaders and the World Jewish Congress. The conflict was sparked by an interview incoming president Flavio Cotti gave to the Swiss newspaper Tribune de Geneve that was published on the eve of his Jan. 1 inauguration. Cotti…

  • Extremist escapes prosecution for call to boycott Jewish goods

    BERN, Feb. 8 (JTA) — A Swiss parliamentary committee has voted not to prosecute an extremist politician for calling last July for a Swiss boycott of Jewish and American products. Swiss Jewish leaders, saying that several Jewish businesses are already suffering from the boycott, criticized the decision not to prosecute Rudolf Keller. Keller had called…

  • U.S. applauds Swiss efforts to deal with its wartime role

    DAVOS, Switzerland, Jan. 31 (JTA) — The United States is seeking to improve relations with Switzerland now that the Alpine nation is confronting its wartime past, U.S. Vice President Al Gore declared at an annual economic conference held here over the weekend. Gore, who headed a U.S. delegation to the Davos World Economic Forum, praised…

  • Swiss commission to finish report by July 1

    ZURICH, Jan. 27 (JTA) — An international commission investigating dormant Swiss bank accounts from the Holocaust era is expected to release its report by July 1, according to its chairman. Paul Volcker added at a news conference Wednesday in Zurich that the Independent Committee of Eminent Persons would finish sifting through the bank’s archives by…

  • Swiss get Jewish president who is proud of her heritage

    BERN, Dec. 20 (JTA) — Switzerland will soon have a president who plans to speak out aggressively about her country’s role in World War II. Recently elected by the Swiss Parliament to assume the country’s presidency on Jan. 1, Ruth Dreifuss said she is “especially proud as a woman and of course also as a…

  • Cotti rejects anti- Semitism

    ZURICH, Aug. 2 (JTA) — Switzerland’s president has used the commemoration of Swiss National Day to issue a call against anti-Semitism. Flavio Cotti called on the Swiss to reject anti-Semitism, despite what he called “unjustified” attacks against Switzerland for its dealings with Nazi Germany. Cotti’s call came in a radio and television address Saturday as…

  • Swiss police suspect bomb was placed at Jewish building

    GENEVA, July 19 (JTA) — Swiss police are investigating whether a parcel left outside a Jewish building here was a bomb. The parcel, discovered last Friday night, contained electronic equipment that is normally used for a bomb, according to the Geneva police, who believe it was placed outside the headquarters of a local Jewish communal…

  • Swiss party calls for boycott of Jewish, American concerns

    ZURICH, July 6 (JTA) — A right-wing party in Switzerland has called for an immediate boycott of “American and Jewish goods, restaurants and travel destinations.” The call by the Swiss Democratic Party came in the wake of a decision last week by U.S. public finance officials to lift a moratorium on sanctions against Switzerland’s leading…